Third station of the cross, Jesus falls for the first time (fresco)

I’m continuing my series of (first draft) sonnets on the stations of the cross. The accompanying fresco is slightly marred by water damage in the top left, but the imperfections time has wrought in them is part of their attraction for me. More details are in the first post.

III. Jesus falls for the first time – the centurion’s lot (part two)

Between the walls of stone and crowd, he goes
stumbling, lurching, down an alley of jeers,
as Sunday’s vaunted saviour among those
who’ve lost their hosannas, forgotten cheers.

Somewhere behind the crowd, I hear a cry
of grief, a word of prayer to some strange god,
such as stirs these people to glorify
their pain as sacrifice and ride roughshod

over death. Such prayer is scarcely spoken
before it fails. He flounders, falters, falls.
Yet up he must, no matter what’s broken:
he has an appointment outside these walls.

Hurrying, we start again for the gate,
damned if we fail to bring him to his fate.

Already published

I. Jesus is condemned to death (Pilate’s story)
II. Jesus takes up his cross (The centurion’s lot, part 1)

By Doug

One thought on “On the way of the cross, sonnet III”

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